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Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle

Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle is a delicious dessert featuring layers of angel food cake, fluffy sweetened cream cheese, and fresh strawberries in a sweet strawberry glaze. It’s easy to throw together and perfect for your next summer dinner party. Follow these keys to success for stellar results every time.
Prep Time - 30 minutes
Cook Time - 0 minutes
Total Time - 30 minutes
Servings - 12 servings
Author - Jennifer

Ingredients

  • 1 cake (about 12 oz) prepared angel food cake, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 pounds fresh strawberries
  • 1 tub (13 oz) Marzetti strawberry glaze
  • 1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tub (8 oz) Cool Whip
Instructions

  1. Slice strawberries into bite-sized pieces. Mix strawberries with strawberry glaze in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  2. Using a hand mixer, mix together the cream cheese and powdered sugar. Add in Cool Whip and mix well. Set aside.
  3. In large trifle bowl, layer half the angel food cake pieces, half the cream cheese mixture, then half the strawberries in glaze. Repeat the layers ending with strawberries in glaze on top.
  4. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  5. Disclosure – I may get a small commission for purchases made through links in this post.
KEY TO SUCCESS #1 – USE LIGHT AND HEAVENLY ANGEL FOOD CAKE
This Straweberry Cheesecake Trifle recipe was born from an “oops” Angel Food cake that I’d baked for my daughter’s birthday. I baked the cake at home and it was perfectly baked but very ugly. I couldn’t serve that at a special celebration like a birthday party! So I cut it up into chunks and made this trifle with it.

You can buy a pre-made Angel Food cake from the grocery store or make your own. I always use an angel food cake mix like the one from Betty Crocker, when I make an angel food cake. I think they turn out fluffier and lighter than the ones that you purchase at the grocery store. You can also use a recipe to make a homemade angel food cake.

I always bake my angel food cake in an angel food cake pan that has a removable bottom. Do you have one of these? If not, you need one! It makes it so easy to get the angel food cake out of the pan in one piece.

After your angel food cake comes out of the oven, turn it upside down until it cools completely. I turn my onto three same-size cans from my pantry and let it cool for several hours. Then you just run a sharp knife between the outside of the cake and the pan then turn it over onto a cake stand or serving plate. The cake will slide right out with the bottom of the pan still attached. Then just run your knife between the cake and the bottom of the pan and gently pull the bottom off.

Does the batter leak out of a pan with a removable bottom? NO! Never. It’s pretty easy to tell if the bottom of the pan is seated in there properly so that it doesn’t leak. I still put a rimmed baking sheet under my angel food cake pan (and a lot of my dishes that go into the oven) just in case though. It also makes it easier to get the cake pan out of the oven.
KEY TO SUCCESS #2 – WHIP UP THE CHEESECAKE LAYER
The cheesecake layer of the Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle is made with cream cheese, powdered sugar, and Cool Whip. You can substitute sweetened freshly whipped cream for the Cool Whip if you’d prefer. I’m always an advocate for using what you have on hand in recipes like this.

Be sure to soften the cream cheese on the countertop for a few minutes before you start mixing so that it will come together. First, use an electric hand mixer to beat the cream cheese then add in the powdered sugar and mix until it’s fully combined. Finally, add in the Cool Whip and whip until the cheesecake filling is smooth.

I have talked about this before, but this bowl is the best for use with a hand mixer. The high sides and flat bottom allow the beaters to do their job without splattering your food all over the kitchen. It’s actually a replacement bowl for a Sunbeam brand stand mixer but it is perfect for a hand mixer too. They have a small 2-quart size for whipping up frostings and meringue and a larger 4-quart one for mixing cookie dough, cake batter, and anything else you can dream up.
KEY TO SUCCESS #3 – GLAZE THOSE PRETTY STRAWBERRIES
Believe it or not, I use a full 2 pounds of strawberries in this Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle. It sounds like a lot but it’s so worth it. Wash your berries then cut them into smaller pieces. You could just halve them if you prefer bigger chunks of strawberries but I went with a finer dice.

The glaze I use is the Marzetti brand Strawberry Glaze from the grocery store. You can usually find this in a refrigerated case in the produce section. It’s in a 12-ounce tub. There is also a sugar-free version that you can check out. You could also make your own strawberry glaze if you’d prefer. I think the Marzetti glaze is really tasty though.

Simply stir the sliced strawberries into the strawberry glaze and it’s ready to go.

KEY TO SUCCESS #4 – MAKING THE LAYERS PRETTY
The bottom layer of this Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle is the cubes of angel food cake. Your angel food cake should be cut into about 1-inch cubes. They do not have to be perfect by any means. Start by adding half the cubes of angel food cake into the bottom of your glass trifle bowl and press them down slightly with your hand.

Next, spread half of the cheesecake mixture over the cake. Put a few spoonfuls of the mixture on the top of the cake then use the back of the spoon to carefully spread it to the edge. It does not have to be perfect and the only part that will even be seen is the part that is right up against the side of the glass bowl.

Spread the strawberries in the glaze on top of the cream cheese layer. Again, the only part that will even be seen is the part right up against the edge of the glass. It will also be a thin layer of strawberries.

Repeat the layers ending with a layer of strawberries in the glaze on the top of the dish. You can decorate the top with whole or sliced strawberries or an extra layer of Cool Whip, but I think it’s pretty just the way it is. Sometimes simpler is better. Remember that.

KEY TO SUCCESS #5 – SERVE IN A LOVELY GLASS TRIFLE BOWL
My trifle bowl is actually a glass salad bowl that I received as a wedding gift 15+ years ago, but this one is similar. I have a footed trifle bowl that I absolutely love and think is so beautiful but it is a little too large for many trifles that I make. It holds over 5 quarts so I sometimes use it as a punch bowl. For this trifle, you’ll want something closer to 3 quarts in size. Something like this Anchor Hocking Trifle Bowl would be perfect.
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